Saturday, June 14, 2014

Talent Show

When I went into downtown Osaka I would sometimes hang out at what the locals call Triangle park in Amemura. There are hardly any public benches in Japanese cities so the park is one of the only places downtown where you can sit down. When people meet up in the city, they often meet here. Many performers and skateboarders also gather here to practice their craft. The last time I went to Triangle park, this guy was practicing something though I couldn't figure out what. He was holding a fan and attempting to balance on something wrapped in a plastic bag. I asked a Japanese women sitting next to me watching the man what he was doing and she said she had no idea. 
There are many characters in a big city like Osaka. 

Friday, June 13, 2014

Back in the USA

In case you haven't heard, I'm back in the US. Actually I've been back for over a week, but I've been somewhat busy catching up with everyone so I haven't gotten around to telling you guys.
I still have some photos from Japan left to process so I'll have a few more posts about Japan in the future.
The title of this blog translates to "Because I'm a photographer", so I may continue to post here about my adventures in the US, so if you're interested in what I'm up to please check in from time to time.

Thank you for your continued viewership!

In the strangest places

I never know what I'm going to find wandering around town. There are millions of interesting life stories out there and I've been lucky to glimpse a few of them. I suppose this should be obvious, but even now I am struck by the kinds of individuals you run into if you keep your eyes open. I didn't have the chance to meet the owner of this house, but in one way or another, they probably aren't a typical Japanese person, whatever that means. 

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Conveyor Belt Sushi

Despite the fact that when many people think of Japan, they think of conveyor belt sushi, until recently, I had never gone to one. There are two of these places in my city and walking back from a shopping adventure, my friend and I decided to stop in. The main feature of these restaurants is a long conveyor belt that stretches through the restaurant with plates of sushi riding on the belt. Customers are allowed to take sushi off the belt and the prices of the sushi are determined by the color of the plates they rest on. At the end of your time at the restaurant, a waitress adds up the cost of your plates and gives you your final total. 

Because this is far from a traditional sushi restaurant, they are able to serve many uncommon, non-traditional kinds of sushi. I had corn sushi, hamburger sushi, and duck sushi to name a few.

In addition to the regular track, there is also a special sushi train that can deliver special orders to your table. You can request anything on the menu from the touch screen at your table and it is brought out to you by the train. The train is styled to look like a Japanese shinkansen.

At around $1 a plate you can try a lot of different sushi. In the end I spent around $12 and had a great time. I probably should have gone to one of these places sooner!

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Very Controlled Flooding

Somewhat strangely, in the middle of Hirakata, a city with a population density of 16,200 per square mile, there are numerous rice paddies. In this picture, a local middle school is surrounded by various types of farmland. This is not the country, this location is a short walk from the city center. The areas that are underwater are part of an extremely complex system of water channels used to flood specific areas of land to grow rice. When I arrived in Japan, farmers were just harvesting their rice and for most of the year, these fields are empty, but over the course of about a week, most farmers planted their rice plants and flooded their fields making for a stark change of scenery walking around town.